In the beginning was hemp: the Chinese were using the plant as a base for medicinal products thousands of years ago. Over the course of time the flower became the joint, which in turn produced the high – and cannabis, the drug made from hemp, was born. After decades of being demonised as "killer weed" and a gateway drug, the tide is now turning again. Research into the use of cannabis for medical purposes has intensified in the USA and Europe over the last few years. This mysterious weed alleviates pain and depression, promotes sleep and stimulates the appetite. It also has over 100 active ingredients - the most important ones being THC and CBD - which suppress chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, for example, and inhibit inflammation. The use of cannabis for medical purposes is now permitted in 23 federal states in the USA.
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